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Leadership That Is New But Not Improved

New And Improved!  We all like to buy products that are new and improved.  It tells us that makers of those products care.  They care about the quality of the product and they care about us.  It tells us they have working on making something good even better.  We like things that are new and improved.

But are there times, especially as leaders, when something new is not the best option?

Recently I was speaking with a pastor who had been at his church 25 years.  I love these conversations because they are growing increasingly rare.  If the opportunity presents itself, I love asking “How did you last so long?”  This is a great question because a pastor with that type of tenure must possess extraordinary people skills, understand pacing and vision, and above all else, have a love for his people that is mutual.

When I asked this pastor that question, I was amazed at his answer.  “I learned long ago that making something fresh was better than getting something new.”  I was blown away by that statement.

I began to look at things in my life that if I kept them fresh, they would be so much better than something new:

  1. My marriage.  That was the most obvious.
  2. My job or career.  I love it so why even look anywhere else.
  3. My home.  Enjoy the one I have rather than go in debt for a new one.
  4. My car.  Same thought process.
  5. My relationships with family and friends.
  6. My church.  If I’m not happy with something where I am at, I’m sure I will find a new set of reasons not to be happy somewhere else.

That is my short list. If I keep those 6 areas of my life fresh, I will be a much more fulfilled individual.  Getting something new does not mean I will get something improved.

What is your list?

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Brian Dodd is a church stewardship & leadership consultant. See www.briandoddonleadership.com for additional insights.